This qualitative study extends literature on research commercialization by examining the dynamic nature of university-industry linkages (UIL). Thirty in-depth interviews conducted in Australia and Germany/the Netherlands provide evidence of the different phases through which UILs evolve and respective measures of success. Communication, understanding, trust, and people are universal drivers, yet managers must consider the variations in the nature of these factors to ensure successful UILs. This study equips managers involved in technology transfer, innovation, and commercialization with critical insights into developing effective relationships. The proposed conceptual framework also uncovers notable theoretical and managerial implications and offers some key research directions.